For the last 6-8 years I've been using one 'nasal mask' (Flexi-fit 407), some 90% of the time, and when ill I'd swap to my full-face 'Quattro' mask. Not wonderful, but overall it seemed to work for me most nights, most of the time.
Then I decided to do some reading, and actually learn more about my OSA, and how to care for it, etc. In doing so, I learned that what I thought of as 'normal', was really not so good, namely, a leak rate that was/is too high most of the time. During this exploration, I realized that my multi-year old mask was leaking around the swivel - so time to replace it.
What I Tried:
I ordered a replacement of my old stand-by. But also decided since my FFM had been chewed on (by puppy), and was somewhat painful to wear, I would search for and buy a new mask.
I bought, tried, and then returned a "Sleepweaver Anew" - leaked too much to even try to sleep with.
I found in my spares box, a "Swift LT", and since I hadn't used nose pillows in many years, gave that a go for a few nights.
Found that I needed my humidity a *lot* higher! Nice fit, no leaks, comfy - but painful inside my nasal passages - like up in my head pain - too much pressure perhaps? Anyhow, something to think on, and maybe slowly work my way into...
For no real reason, I ordered a "Quattro Air" FFM to try. Have only used it one night so far, but am having real leak issues! This mask is fighting me, not painful, but whether loose or tight, leaks are an issue. Am going to skip it for a night, then try it again - I do have return insurance on it, so it *can* go back, but each return still costs me bout $20 bucks a toss - and to me that hurts.
At the same time, I ordered a "Wisp". The idea really interested me! It seems that the smaller the 'seal' area, the lower the possible leaks seem to be. Plus, replacement parts for nose pillows as well as the Wisp are a fair bit cheaper than for my other masks...
So, anyhow, I took the Wisp out of the packaging, and without touching or adjusting anything, slipped it on, started my 'mask test' and got ZERO LEAKS right out the door~! The head-gear isn't even snug, it's just sort of hanging on my head, with no stretch in it, and the 'mask' (if you can call this little cup-thing a mask) is on my nose fitting perfectly. OMG!! It's the small/MED size. Can you say 'WOW'? I can!
Now, there is a small fly buzzing around (of course) - and that is called "mouth-breathing". Prior to my nose surgery many years ago, I was a simple mouth-breather all the time. Couldn't even sit still and read a book without breathing through my mouth. After the surgery, much different. Nose breathing is where it's at in my book. Makes kissing more fun too :-)
The problem is, I randomly 'hiss' out my mouth, which raises my leak rate, and my AHI and AI too. Like above, I last tried a 'Chin strap' many years ago, and they just didn't work. So I am ordering a new chin strap Monday.
Any suggestions on which one to buy?
My concern is I just do not know if I am mouth-breathing because my jaw relaxed and dropped, or if I am breathing (hissing) between my teeth with my jaw closed?
I guess the take-away from this post is; if you haven't looked at, or tried a new mask in a few years or longer, it may well be worth your time to scope them out. Changes are happening, and the products are maturing it seems.
My next question is, which will be better? The 'Wisp', or the new "Swift FX Nano"??
"Only two defining forces have ever offered to die for you. Jesus Christ and the American Soldier. One died for your Soul, the other for your Freedom."